It’s Spring Time and the Critters are out There

It’s finally Spring and that means that the kids are out. I love this time of the year because there are so many possibilities of photographing parents and their kids doing what they do. It’s a whole other challenge of cpaturing that part of the life cycle without endangering the critter and it’s a very important one. Whether it’s a Nuthatch going into a cavity, a Prryhuloxia bringing a nice grasshopper in to it’s noisy kid or even a couple of pup foxes bugging Mom to nurse, there’s is always some great moment out there waiting to be captured.

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Not to mention that the kids themselves are usually pretty darn cute. If you want to start with something simple and easy to find, you can never go wrong with rabbits. They are everywhere and are always a fun subject. Trick with working on a ground critter, get low. Getting low can eliminate that background and make it blur out. Not to mention everyone looks down at a critter munching on the grass but not enough look across at their level. It can be a very powerful image when you see life from their perspective.

Kids again

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It has finally come done to the last week of classes and I am super excited. Yesterday was the last day of projects for me which means all i have left is one annoying final. Happy, happy, happy. This also means that this weekend i can go out and shoot as much as i want wihtout the thought of having to get back early for school work. I thouhgt i would share my excitement by posting this shot of a couple Red Fox pups at there den up in Alaska. They were very playful one evening and between the bear shooting Dad and I were doing, we photographed them. They were amusing, quite a challenge to keep a straight face while watching them play. Even now while writing this i can seem them jumping on mom wanting here to play too.

Images captured with D2Hs, 600f4, TC-14e, on Lexar UDMA Digital Film

Endings of an awesome vacation

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The trip was a blast. Dad, Mom and me came back with probably close to 50,000 images amongst the three of us. Amazing how well the wildlife and weather cooperated for us during these past 16 days. Even all the flights were on time. Of course all trips have to end at some point, including ours. We didn’t fly out on a turbo 207 like the one above, but since i didn’t take any shoots of the jets we were on, i figured that this would be appropriate to end on.

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Part of our trip was out on Kodiak Island. Some of the largest bears in Alaska can be found there, and we wanted to see them. This one particular bear, a sow probably around 4 or 5, was a complete butterball. When she stood you could see nothing but a round ball of fluff. Very good looking bear but a little heavy for the age. Considering how cautious she was fishing when other bears around, she would run a good distance whenever a male was in the river, we concluded that the weight must have been from grasses.

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The salmon run really hadn’t come in on the river in the days before we arrived, but when we got out there the salmon were in the thousands. Lucky break again for us. First, great weather the whole trip and now fish for the bears. Unfortunately due to the lateness of fish arriving, which is common all over the state right now, most of the larger bears weren’t around fishing. However some of the younger bears, mostly around 3 yrs old and up, were out entertaining us.

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Of course bears aren’t the only creatures at the river that we are photographing. Gold Crown Sparrows are busy flying around grabbing the insects off the Cow Parsnip or Angelica, that accumulate on the top of the white flowers.

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Another visitor to the fish frenzy is the Bald Eagle. You can always count on at least one around when the bears are fishing.

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When the bears go fishing, everyone is invited. There are always Glacous Gulls around to pick up those scraps they leave. When the salmon run is slow they eat the whole fish not leaving much, but when the run is going well they tend to eat just the skin and roe, leaving most of the fish for others to cleanup, and it always is.

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Bears were not the only thing that we were photographing. There was a Red Fox den at the site where we were staying. The den had 6 pups that we saw for sure, probably a few weeks old. Here are 2 of them trying to get mom to feed them. They are difficult to shoot, they keep making me laugh.

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